Because of my interest in writing, I’ve attended the Hemingway-Pfeiffer Creative Writers’ Retreat in the quaint little town of Piggott, Arkansas for the past several years. To a writer, it’s an experience like no other. The barn studio where Hemingway wrote stories, including parts of “Farewell to Arms”, is inspiring to the retreat attendees who are working toward success in their own writing fields.
My interest is in both fiction and poetry. While attending the retreats, I’ve penned two poems, among other works, and today I’d like to share one of the poems. Keep in mind that poetry can be fiction or fact, and the part of this one that says my books are sold on Amazon—well, that part is fiction. It’s a dream!
Now I share this poem:
Not Quite Hemingway
I’ve come back to this place once more to write
where Hemingway composed “Farewell to Arms.”
I doubt my novels ever will shine bright—
I don’t possess the Papa Ernest charms.
I cannot kill the wild, ferocious game
nor win at poker at the studio.
The barn that bears the famous author’s name
inspires but does not help my words to flow.
If only I could write one sentence true
then I would leave my legacy in bold
imprints the way best-selling writers do.
Their books stand out on shelves like slabs of gold.
My books are sold on Amazon these days
but lack the polished look of Hemingway’s.
cCopyright, 2010, Freeda Baker Nichols
From Legacy, Creative Writers’ Retreat XIV, November 2010
Hemingway-Pfeiffer Museum and Educational Center
Poems by Poets’ Roundtable of Arkansas, 2011